'Do Two Ounces of Marijuana Constitute a Death Warrant?'

What would you do if masked, armed men burst into your home early in the morning? Anthony Diotaiuto, a 23-year-old bartender in Sunset*, Florida, ran to his bedroom and got his pistol, whereupon he was gunned down by two members of a SWAT team. Police had a search warrant alleging "drug-related activity." In addition to Diotaiuto's corpse, the search produced two ounces of pot, a scale, and some plastic bags.

Police, who knew Diotaiuto had a handgun permit, claim they announced their presence before invading the house. The neighbors say they didn't:

Next-door neighbor Rudy Strauss told the Sun-Sentinel he and his wife were awake when the raid occurred and heard the crash of Diotauito's door being smashed in, but heard no yelling announcing the presence of police. There were no words spoken outside, he said, adding that he and his wife watched the raid unfold from their window. "I heard this loud bang, and I saw a flash," Strauss said Tuesday. "I never heard them say 'Police.' If somebody were pounding on the door, I would definitely hear that, or if they yelled, 'Police, police!'"

Residents outraged by the raid attended a city council meeting this week. "Do two ounces of marijuana constitute a death warrant?" one of them asked. The Drug War Chronicle notes that the police say "they sent in the SWAT team to lessen the possibility of violence. They did not explain why they thought a surprise attack on the home of an unsuspecting but presumably armed man would produce a nonviolent result."

[*As ed points out, the city is Sunrise, not Sunset, although the latter seems more fitting.]

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  • ||

    "they sent in the SWAT team to lessen the possibility of violence"

    Well you see, I had my dog crap on your lawn the lessen the possibility of dogshit.

  • ||

    *tic* This is what disarmament of the citizenry was supposed to prevent. */tic*

  • ||

    The answer is "Of course it's not."

    Hate to jack the thread, but it is worth noting the statements by Karen Tandy of the DEA when they arrested Marc Emery (reported from DRCNET.ORG):

    While DEA officials in Seattle focused on accusations on drug dealing in their public statement, a column by Joel Connelly in the Seattle Post-Intelligencer this morning quotes a statement by DEA chief Karen Tandy suggesting political motivations: " Today's arrest of Mark (sic) Scott Emery, publisher of Cannabis Culture magazine and the founder of a marijuana legalization group, is a significant blow not only to the marijuana trafficking trade in the US and Canada, but also to the marijuana legalization movement... Hundreds of thousands of dollars of Emery's illicit profits are known to have been channeled to marijuana legalization groups active in the United States and Canada. Drug legalization lobbyists now have one less pot of money to rely on."

    This whole fucking thing is about preventing the legalization of marijuana.

    The good news is that since DEA pretty much admitted that this is political persecution, it will make Canada that much more reluctant to extradite Marc to the US.

  • ||

    Jeez guys, you have to expect a little collateral damage now and then, there's a (drug) WAR on. It's worth it to get rid of the scourge of marijuana. Right? Right?

  • ||

    These tactics are necessary to the invention of the toilet, had they knocked first he may have flushed the dope first. Unfortunatelly, this is the result all too often.

    But at least he was a predatory criminal and not someone innocent. Everyone allways gets what they deserve.

  • ||

    "Jeez guys, you have to expect a little collateral damage now and then, there's a (drug) WAR on. It's worth it to get rid of the scourge of marijuana. Right? Right?"

    Right! I mean if we can kill innocent Iraqis "for their own good" surely we won't shed a tear for some stupid dope head while we make an investment in the future security of our country from narco-terrorists, right?

  • ||

    I may be losing my marbles here, but didn't Reason have an article many moons ago about the same thing happening to some old eccentric LA guy on a multimillion dollar estate. A DEA and a LAPD were apperently flying over said estate in a chopper and one of them claimed they saw the Mary Jane growing on the guy's land (both pointed the finger at the other one for the "hey, I see pot" comment during the ensuing investigation). Smelling a nice chunk of high-priced LA real estate they could grab under forfeiture laws the LAPD stormed the house and killed the guy when he came down the stairs holding a shotgun.

  • ||

    Is it wrong that Jane's continual defense of jack-booted government thuggery gets me all hot and bothered?

    Seriously, Jane, waaaay hot. Say some more.

  • ||

    Nathan,

    IIRC, it was LA county sherrif's dept, not LAPD. But yeah, that was a famous case.

    One thing about a lot of SWAT tactics: they are predicated upon dealing with professional druggies, who know what to do when the cops arrive. When applied to honest citizens, they often are a disaster.

    One famous case is the old guy who tried to defend his home with a black powder cap and ball revolver. SWAT shot him in the head, IIRC he survived and they charged him with murder since his revolver discharged when he was shot. Pretty sure SWAT had the wrong address.

  • ||

    The blood-stained hammer of freedom always brings a tear to my eye.

  • ||

    Pretty sure SWAT had the wrong address.

    This has happened more than once. Quite frankly, with the number of people in this country who own guns, and the number of stumblefuck SWAT teams out there who don't seem to know how to double check an address, I'm surprised that it doesn't happen more often.

  • drf||

    YEAH. the guy'd dun rong (sic). he deserves punishment. that's why we backboarded him first. cuz he was in a suspicious area. don't you want to do it fer the chidren (sic)?????

    I guess the computer room at Jane's grouphome was left open again...

    p.s., happy friday.

  • ||

    What does it say about the police's relationship to the community that they could get the wrong house?

    If they were doing their job, there wouldn't be any question. They'd know which house has people coming and going all hours of the night, or whatever. They wouldn't have to check the address, because they'd know it as "the green house on the right, with the dangling mailbox," like the neighbors do.

  • ||

    the search produced two ounces of pot, a scale, and some plastic bags

    Wow, like most people I've got two-thirds of that stuff in my house right now!!!

  • ||

    Why couldn't they just wait till he woke up and came outside on his own? Don't intend to make a tasteless pun by using the term overkill, but even without the shooting, that's what this is. At most a two bit dealer who probably just cuts up ounces and sells the quarter to his buddies to make an extra 20 here and there. a SWAT team for that. Ugh.

    Too many cops, not enough crime.

    But yet if I refuse to waste a giant chunk of my income in order to fund all this nonsense, I'M the bad guy.

  • drf||

    Hey Joe! Happy Friday!

    [Ashcroft-style](Expecting police to do that type of policing is, well, a bit beyond kicking ass. They can't be social workers, too. *pat pat* just leave the law enforcement to those with the matches and lighterfluid) [/Ashcroft-style]

    barf.

    Policing is a tough gig: you have to shoot, punch, drive, do PR, know all the dogs, kids, and neighbors - but when it works well, as what Joe suggests, lots of these problems can go away.

    Plus, a simple deportation of all dime-baggers to Sweden where they can share an efficiency apartment with seven dissidents and one toilet with Roman Maroni might be much more effective than shooting them.

    Joe is totally correct: The beat cop in our neighborhood knows everybody, and everybody knows him. He knows how to deal with skateboarding kids and LOLs. He's a nice guy. He looks pretty tough, too. Having correct intelligence about the neighborhood is one of the most important tools of law enforcement. It's the "serving" part of "protect and serve".

    why is the image of Charles Durning yelling at Christopher Lloyd (SCHULZZZZZZZ!!!) in the mel brooks remake of "to be or not to be" in my head now?

  • ||

    Hate to jack the thread
    Randy- At least you apologized.

    Is it wrong that Jane's continual defense of jack-booted government thuggery gets me all hot and bothered?
    mediageek- Maybe you're horny for trolls. Do you watch the Lord of the Rings movies a lot?

    A SWAT team for a lone dealer with a handgun? Was this guy formerly in Delta Force or something?

  • ||

    The link omits some details from the original story, although none of it justifies wasting the dude.

    "The Police Department also gave a brief description of the information that led to the search warrant. Voss said that the department had the house under surveillance and made at least one "controlled" drug purchase there."

    http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/local/broward/sfl-cswat10aug10,0,7916325.story?coll=sfla-sports-headlines&track=mostemailedlink

    Kind of explains why the guy had scales, and why he kept a piece. Doesn't really justify why SWAT was involved - they could have rolled this guy up at work, then just searched the house with nobody there. Terrible decision by the cops on this one.

  • ||

    "just leave the law enforcement to those with the matches and lighterfluid"

    LoL

  • ||

    I could be wrong, but I don't think cities receive manna from DHS for community policing.
    Tanks and paramilitary training, you bet.

    But this stuff doesn't suprise me. Why else does every little burg have a SWAT team, to stop terrorists?

  • ||

    Why are people talking about different tactics the cops shoulda used instead of how it's just plain wrong that mj is even illegal in the first place? Seriously.

  • ||

    Every time Jane posts, I am going to sell drugs to someone.
    I don't even sell drugs, but I am going to start, just to piss her off.

  • ||

    Comrades, welcome to the USSA, United Soviet States of Americia.

    I remember back in the dark ages, when Raygun was first dishing out para-mil training funding to local police and Meese was going after the 4th amendment, everyone kept saying, Don't worry gringo, the conservatives are all for small government. Not like those big bad liburals! (of course now that all Democratics have become Republican lite, it's a mute point anyway)

  • ed||

    The name of the city is Sunrise, not Sunset.

  • ||

    Any word on how the council answered the two-ounce death warrant question?

  • ||

    This is so sad.

    The worst part is this will inevitably end up with some half-ass apology: "Oh, gosh, we really should have been more careful." This guy was murdered. There should be several cops spending life in prison for this murder.

    Apparently I have nothing better to do than preach to the choir.

    Chrisd, why don't you drop a couple ounces off in Jane's backyard and call SWAT?

  • drf||

    Skeptikos:

    You are hereby awarded the Two Snaps and A Circle award :)

  • ||

    Yet another reason to have absolutely no respect for these goons. I seriously think they use these SWAT tactics essentially because they think it's fun to dress up and play army-guy and they get off on the "excitement" of a big raid. Of course they rarely seem to go after anyone that might actually require such tactics or who could actually hurt them - just some poor guy with a couple ounces of pot. Fucking cowards.

  • MP||

    it's a mute point anyway

    shhhhhh....

  • ed||

    The lack of outrage outside the victim's immediate circle is what's shocking. The propaganda wing of the War on Drugs has earned another medal.

  • ||

    Cops on SWAT really scare me. These type of cops like to get themselves involve in "harry" situations; "it's what we live for "(a SWAT member actually said that on national television during a interview with the history channel). Cops sometimes get over anxious.

  • ||

    In addition to Diotaiuto's corpse, the search produced two ounces of pot, a scale, and some plastic bags.

    I see that there had been an entrapment, pardon me, "controlled drug purchase" already made, so its possible that the pot was there before the cops.

    Its also possible it wasn't. When I read the post, the first thing I thought was "this has throwdown written all over it."

    You're a vice squad detective, you call in a raid that results in a dead citizen, you'll make sure, damn sure, that there are drugs on the premises.

  • ||

    It just keeps getting worse, doesn't it? And I can't think of a damned thing to do about it. Damn the Republicans and Democrats both.

  • ||

    Lowdog,

    Because getting killed by a SWAT team is way, way worse thank getting a ticket or community service for pot possession. Yes, it's bad that mj is illegal. It's even worse that cops use SWAT teams to kill suspected dealers.

    Why does every police force in America need military equipment?

  • ||

    Another scary note: I found only one newspaper outside of Florida (Long Island Newsday) bothered to cover this story when I searched Google news.

  • ||

    Why does every police force in America need military equipment?

    Because you need military equipment if you're going to fight The Enemy. And that's how cops view non-cops--not citizens deserving of protection, but The Enemy. Even the fact that non-cops are referred to as "civilians" leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

  • ||

    You're a vice squad detective, you call in a raid that results in a dead citizen, you'll make sure, damn sure, that there are drugs on the premises.

    R C, that wouldn't surprise me at all. But, wouldn't they have thrown down something worse than a couple ounces of pot to cover themselves? Seems like a syringe, some crack or a box of Sudafed at least

  • screwtape||

    Here in Nashville, Swat members entered a man's home in the evening without announcing themselves. Since they were not wearing any easily identifiable clothing, the man thought he was being robbed and reached for his gun. He was shot several times in the chest and died on the scene.

    It turns out that they were supposed to be entering the house 2 lots down and made a boo boo that cost an innocent man his life. Did I mention that his poor wife was being handcuffed in the other room while this took place? Oh and that his wife was 70 and he was 61?

    http://archives.cnn.com/2000/US/10/06/tennessee.shooting.02.ap/

  • ||

    Brain,

    Sadly no, pot will do.

    Jennifer,

    What's truly strange is that the priority is the safety of the officers rates higher than the public they're supposed to protect and serve. I can understand the cops feeling this way, but they don't even try to diguise it.

  • ||

    "Hi! I'm from the government, and I'm here to kill you."

  • Pete Guither||

    As long as we continue to allow our police forces to the lives of citizens (and cops) to be less important than the flushing of a couple of ounces of marijuana, there will be a lot more cases like this.

    I'll be adding Diotaiuto soon to my list of similar drug war victims.

    We must, as a society, come to the conclusion that busting down a door to make an arrest should be reserved for those rare situations where it is required to save the lives of citizens (like hostage situations). Not for pot busts.

  • ||

    I, for one, welcome our Murderous Overlords.

    Mr. F.

  • ||

    "I seriously think they use these SWAT tactics essentially because they think it's fun to dress up and play army-guy and they get off on the "excitement" of a big raid."

    I seriously think that the cops are so afraid of and alienated from the general public that they think they have to behave like this. Especially in California, the land that turned "neighborhood" into a dirty word.

  • ||

    About DHS funding and small-town terrorists, my small CT town has recently decided that they will no longer publish the public school bus routes to reduce the risk of "terrorism and child predators."
    It's a good thing we have such fine minds working in Fairfield County.

  • ||

    Folks, things have changed since 9/11. We can no longer sit and watch while the marijuana terrorists eat all our Doritos!

  • Vache Folle||

    A similar event took place in Whitfield County, GA. Two deputies, who claimed to be acting on an anonymous tip about drugs, broke into the home of an elderly man who used a walker at night. They shot him to death in his bed where he was trying to defend himself with the gun he kept in his nightstand. They did not announce themselves, either, and I don't think they found drugs. The shooting was ruled by the GBI to be righteous!

  • ||

    Even the fact that non-cops are referred to as "civilians" leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

    Thank you, Jennifer, I thought I was the only one who found that disturbing. And what about "Civilian Review Boards"?.

    I won't bore everyone by linking Sir Robert Peel's nine points again.

    Fuck it, yes I will. http://www.magnacartaplus.org/briefings/nine_police_principles.htm

    See also Law Enforcement Against Prohibition.

    http://www.leap.cc/

  • ||

    Alienated? Certainly. Afraid? I don't think so.

    I think the individual officers do get a sense of excitement out of the raid which explains their enthusiasm for it (but as I said, I bet they're not so enthusiastic against a well defended target). As for their prevalence (SWAT teams) I think it has more to do with pork. Once you've secured a lot of funding to set up, train and maintain a SWAT team you feel some need to justify its presence and use it. Since there is no were near enough real crime to justify the number of SWAT teams you need to manufacture some "crime" - like convincing the public that a guy with a couple ounces of pot is a dangerous criminal.

  • ||

    Ugh. I forgot to include the quote I was referring to:

    I seriously think that the cops are so afraid of and alienated from the general public that they think they have to behave like this.

  • ||

    "Hi! I'm from the government, and I'm here to kill you."

    Portlander, best gallows humor of the day, so far...

    I was watching a report on CNN during lunch at BK yesterday, and they were showing some bomb-sniffing dogs and their trainer explaining how these cute, friendly dogs were protecting America from terrorist threats. Then the trainer cop says, "Yeah, they train on marijuana first, then they move to heroin..." I thought - WTF? Is the entire "war on terror" just an extension (justification?) for the "war on drugs"??

  • ||

    A perfect example of the real intent behind handgun registration statutes; it gives the police a phony reason to further militarize themselves and to assist trigger happy politicians to chip away at the tiny fraction of rights we have left.

  • ||

    About DHS funding and small-town terrorists, my small CT town has recently decided that they will no longer publish the public school bus routes to reduce the risk of "terrorism and child predators."

    Jeebus. Since these busses take exactly the same route at exactly the same time every day, I don't think Johnny Jihadi is going to need a written schedule to figure it out.

  • ||

    Randolph--

    What the hell town is that? Geez, just when I think Connecticut can't get any more ridiculous. . . .

    Isaac-

    No, it's not just you. Maybe it's just because I was an English major, but I DO think that language is important. Orwell got that right. Euphemisms and innuendo are fine when talking about bathroom or sex activities, but I find them EXTREMELY unpleasant when they're used by the government to muddy the view of their own activities. I think the difference between "citizen" and "civilian" is of far more than mere semantic importance.

  • ||

    WTF? Is the entire "war on terror" just an extension (justification?) for the "war on drugs"??

    Yes. What else are the police going to do with all this "war on terror" funding when there just isn't enough terror around to fight? As mentioned above, there isn't enough real crime - so the only possible outcome of all this expanded power is the police using it agaist drug "crimes."

  • ||

    Police told reporters the day of the shooting they knew Diotaiuto has a license to possess a weapon...

    Actually since one is not required to have a license to possess a gun in Florida I think what they must have meant that he had a concealed carry permit.

  • drf||

    "About DHS funding and small-town terrorists, my small CT town has recently decided that they will no longer publish the public school bus routes to reduce the risk of "terrorism and child predators."

    Jeebus. Since these busses take exactly the same route at exactly the same time every day, I don't think Johnny Jihadi is going to need a written schedule to figure it out."

    Yes, but RC - Johnny "huge durka" Jihadi (is he related to the terrorist "ischeet m'drawz" or "mustaf herod upyor poupr"?), since busses are public, they run irregularly, despite printed schedules. Therefore an inside job would be needed to minimize johnny's waiting time. remember how forest gump bored the first one to death... (how 'bout dem Pack?)

  • ||

    All I can say is you got to send a message to the community and the politicians that you will not stand for this. This is something we do at Seattle Hempfest. I know the name invokes images of "burned out hippies" flashing peace signs and passing pipes. But as this story and some of the commenters stories point out, its not just the hippies that are getting gunned down by those that are sworn to protect you. Innocent people from all walks of life are getting caught up in this mess.

    I would certainly like to know how the cop who shot this guy feels. Is it a thrill to him or is he regretful? We should be asking him and his superiors if 2 ounces is worth a death warrant. Some, I am sure, will justify it by saying it was self defence. But deep down, they know the truth, how does that make them really feel?

  • ||

    Jennifer - I can't disclose my exact location, but it's between Stamford and Norwalk

  • ||

    I would certainly like to know how the cop who shot this guy feels. Is it a thrill to him or is he regretful? We should be asking him and his superiors if 2 ounces is worth a death warrant. Some, I am sure, will justify it by saying it was self defence. But deep down, they know the truth, how does that make them really feel?

    How much guilt do you think was experienced by the witch hunters who burned to death people who did NOT have Satanic powers? How much guilt felt by the torturers of the Inquisition? How much guilt did Mao's henchmen feel when 50 million of their compatriots starved to death?

    When you're talking about murderous, power-abusing thugs there are two possibilities--they're sociopaths (or even psychopaths), in which case the idea of a conscience doesn't even apply, or else they behave in good conscience because they've convinced themselves that the people they kill really were threats. Aaargh! We have to kill the witches before they cast a spell and bring back the plague! We have to kill the Jews before they contaminate the precious German body politic! We have to kill the capitalists who threaten our precious workers' utopia! We have to kill the pot smokers who want to turn our children into zombies!

    And they sincerely believe this, too.

  • ||

    To add to my last post, if you're the type of person who thinks marijuana needs to be illegal it doesn't matter that there are only two ounces.

    Let's say you're an HONEST cop, and you raid the home of a man whom you believe has enough anthrax to kill all of Manhattan. But after he's dead, you learn he only had enough anthrax to kill two or three people. Are you going to fell guilty?

  • Adam||

    To capitalize on RandyAyn's threadjack, Marc Emery's got a piece up about his Capitalism Activism that should warm the hearts of any and all libertarians, and most freedom-lovers of all stripes.

    Emery apparently was a free speech pioneer (speaking about marijuana was illegal in Canada as late as 1994), and a relentless advocate of the Right to Shop on Sundays.

    As for killing this cat, what the fuck is wrong with these people? I'm sure the right will be screaming their bloody heads off about how cops can do no wrong again.

    I'd like to point out that the Orlando Sentinel is the same paper that reported the baby's ashes/cocaine search earlier this week.

  • ||

    The bastards had better be "afraid",...Some of us "civilians" are getting pretty fed up with this kind of shit!

  • ||

    Jennifer,
    Certainly understand your sentiments but I don't fully believe that all cops are stripped of there humanity. In fact, I have cops in my family who believe in leaving the single toker alone but if they are caught selling on the playground, all hell will break loose. ONDCPs statistics even suggest many of these cops have either tried smoking pot or may even still be occassional users.

    Futhermore, there are lots of cops who don't want to raid a house merely on suspicion of pot dealing, they are forced to as per their job requirements. Therefore, I ask, does the shooter have a conscious and what is it doing to him/her? Yes, you may be correct, but then again, somewhere along the line, many cops have had enough and started LEAP, Law Enforcement Against Prohibition.

    Finally, as a core member of the Seattle Hempfest, I have interacted many times with SPD. Nearly all that I have talked to don't beleive in this level of enforcement and some go as far as calling for full decriminalization and possibly even legalization. As to what Jacob Sullum refers to from time to time, they feel too much of their resources are sucked into this and less to focus on more violent criminals. This has an effect on precint moral.

    You maybe surprised one day when you might see the shooter join LEAP and speak about what they were a part of. These are the cops we need at the forefront. They are needed to tell their stories to their superiors and politicians.

  • ||

    "ONDCPs statistics even suggest many of these cops have either tried smoking pot or may even still be occassional users."

    The ones who still have some humanity, you mean.

  • ||

    I find myself saying this a lot lately: I have a lot of respect for people whose job is to risk their lives on a daily basis to keep safety, order,and ultimately, freedom in our society.
    I'm bothered by people who hate cops just for the hell of it, especially when a lot of those people have had well-deserved encounters with the police. That being said, I absolutely can not stand bullshit like this. I feel like every time I read something about cops being assholes, it's of course the drug war. From cases of clear entrapment to blowing away someone whose biggest sin was probably getting stoned and eating some potato chips on the couch, to that "let's arrest Indian clerks who don't understand our meth lingo" sting that was written about on Hit and Run last week, the drug war is increasingly making me wish for a storming of the bastille. My guess is that some day, something like this is going to happen to a beloved celebrity and/or politicians kid. Only then will the general public/govt officials start to get outraged and wonder what in the hell we are doing. On the one hand, you can't honestly expect a SWAT team not to fire when they encounter and armed man in a raid, but that only strengthens the question of FOR WHAT THE HELL DO WE NEED SWAT TEAMS GOING AFTER POT SMOKERS!? Since most politicians seem to have "experimented" (what a joke that term is) with pot at this point, somebody should be asking this question every day at every press conference of every senator, governor, and president. "Sir, you have admitted to smoking marijuana. Do you feel that society would have been better served had your been jumped by a SWAT team and thrown in prison? No? Oh, that's just a good law for other people?"

  • ||

    Futhermore, there are lots of cops who don't want to raid a house merely on suspicion of pot dealing, they are forced to as per their job requirements.

    Although it makes no difference to the families of the dead, I personally think even LESS of such cops than I do of the true believers. Let's compare: "I am going to imprison or kill a person whom I believe to be a serious threat to society" versus "I am going to imprison or kill a person whom I know is harmless, but y'know, I have a mortgage to pay off, and my wife ran up the credit card bills again, and the kids need braces, and I want to upgrade to a bigger TV, and if I change careers at my age I'll have to take a HUGE pay cut."

    Nope, I'm not impressed.

  • ||

    I agree with Jennifer; people can always find a way to justify what they do, or to convince themselves that things really didn't happen the way that they did.

    You know? Just once I'd like to see one of these masked bastards get a taste of his own medicine! And the shooter get off by claiming it was an accident!

  • ||

    Laws against everything and abitrary enforcement.

    That is the expected end-state (maybe the current state?).

  • ||

    I've occasionally wondered what kind of training cops get - i.e. does anyone tell them not to treat "civilians" as less than human? It probably doesn't matter. Other service workers get that training and they still treat their customers like shit (unless they make tips!). Trust me, I know.

  • ||

    In the early 90s Titusville, FL police raided a house in error*. The father shot the first cop that came in (in a black skimask and with no poloce ID).

    The wife and kids were terrorized and the guy arrested (somehow the cops managed to not just shoot him). They found some vials of a prescription painkiller that the dad was using because of a construction accident and a couple of joints in the teenage boys bedroom. Some drug kingpin.

    At the trial the jury found him Not Guilty. People who had headed the group to collect donations to fund his defense found themselves harrassed by every police agency in Brevard County for the next two years or so.

    "No-knock" raids gone wrong were common in the late 80s and early 90s. I hoped** at the time that maybe cops might see the error of their ways, but instead that have just upped the firepower.

    *my recollection is vague; he may have been turned in by a neighbor that was pissed off about something. He was not "dealing drugs".

    **hope is now completely gone. I always think the worst in any story about cops.

  • ||

    Jennifer,

    I work for the government.

    Do you have any pointers about which directives I receive from the democratic government I work for I should adhere to, and which ones I should ignore?

  • ||

    Like, if Deputy Billy Bob doesn't think stopping some good old boys from stomping those mouthy queers who always parade around town like they own the place, does that count?

  • ||

    Anyone seen clockwork orange, or better yet read the book? Who do you think wants to be a cop. There are definitely folks like my neighbor who grew up on Andy Griffith reruns....BUT...

    But then there are the other ones. Like SWAT guys. You know, The USSR had no trouble finding really righteous KGB agents. As our "police" don't. Remember back when we first heard about the glow stick of faith being administered to prisoners anally in Iraq. Wasn't it a former US prison guard who originally got caught?

    The reason I trust my neighbor (besides the fact that the other cops call him Goody 2 shoes) is that after the academy, he spent 6 months working at the Cook County/Chicago lock up. He told me that if he'd even had to work there for one more pay period, he was gonna flee the country. I remember when I first met him, he was telling me about the "animals" there, I thought he was talking about the prisoners, but then he made my day when he said, at any given moment, you could improve society immeasurably by releasing the inmates and jailing the jailers.

    But come on people, this isn't news; really, this is just the latest case. How long have we led the world now in per capita inmate population? And it isn't just drugs, it's Jacob's favorite SCOTUS nominee saying there was no reason not to arrest 12 year olds for eating french fries as well. (sorry low blow, I just love to document how even libertarians end up supporting a police state in the end)

  • ||

    joe-

    Unless the guys who raided that house had specific orders to do a no-knock raid in the middle of the night, somebody should have had the good sense to use his discretion and get on the bullhorn and say "This is the police, step into an area where we can see you with your hands up." Rather than going in a manner that's almost indistinguishable from a thief in the night, just begging for an armed response.

    Just because you're ordered to do something bad doesn't mean you have to do it in the most dangerous and inhumane way possible.

    As for you? Well, if the mayor orders you to ED an old lady's house and give it to Walmart, I realize that there's no way to make it pleasant for her, but if you have some discretion you can at least make it no worse than it has to be. Like, say, giving her several months to find a new situation instead of telling her to be out in 30 days. Like, when somebody serves her with the paperwork, have a nice social worker go along and find out what kind of help she'll need moving. Instead of sending the rudest cop on the force to tell her that if she doesn't move they'll forcibly evict her.

    Just because somebody is ordered to do a bad thing doesn't mean they have to do it in the worst way possible.

  • ||

    joe

    At what point would you decide that you were tired of following orders you didn't agree with and go get another job?

    Jennifer at 03:08 PM suggested that cops who don't like it should quit their jobs. If your Deputy Billy Bob doesn't want to follow his department's policies he needs to get his worthless ass out of there.

    Just a note here, in most departments drug cops are vounteers. No one is forced into drug stakeout or raid duty. The money and percs are enough to attract many. But in the end the one's who stay are borderline psychos.

  • ||

    Do you have any pointers about which directives I receive from the democratic government I work for I should adhere to, and which ones I should ignore?

    I can't possibly cover all contingencies, but how's this for starters: if you're ordered to imprison or kill someone you know is innocent, don't do it?

    Unless, of course, you're afraid of losing your job, and figure that hurting the innocent is WAY better than having to accept a lower standard of living.

  • ||


    These tactics are necessary to the invention of the toilet, had they knocked first he may have flushed the dope first. Unfortunatelly, this is the result all too often.
    Comment by: Jane at August 12, 2005 11:42 AM



    Of course, the cops could just the water shut off to the house, and wait for the suspect to use the toilet.

    After that, simply go knock on the door.

  • ||


    What's truly strange is that the priority is the safety of the officers rates higher than the public they're supposed to protect and serve.
    Comment by: David at August 12, 2005 01:41 PM



    Do you seriously believe that "To Serve and Protect" refers to duty the police have toward the serfs? Or is it that we have a duty to serve and protect the police?

  • ||

    Do you have any pointers about which directives I receive from the democratic government I work for I should adhere to, and which ones I should ignore?

    Not to speak for Jennifer, but I'd say, but I'd say you have an ethical duty to ignore any immoral ones.

  • ||

    Ahhhhh not only was I too slow since Jennifer already answered, but I really need to learn to use that "Preview" button...

  • ||

    Too much pontificating about the noble duty to ignore immoral orders, and not enough common sense: Going in without warning or clear identification was horrible practice. (And "clear identification" needs to be "clear" to the person in question. A half-awake guy in the dark can't recognize cops as easily as an alert guy in daylight.)

    I'm no SWAT expert, but if they use the option most likely to result in an armed response then the people who make the decision are endangering the lives of the cops under their command. They could have arrested him when he was leaving his house in daylight, so that he'd be in an open area where he can be easily surrounded and unable to destroy evidence.

  • ||

    Too much pontificating about the noble duty to ignore immoral orders

    Too much? Hardly. I think we could use a lot more of it.

  • ||

    Jennifer,

    "I can't possibly cover all contingencies, but how's this for starters: if you're ordered to imprison or kill someone you know is innocent, don't do it?"

    They didn't know he was innocent. I know, I know, stupid drug laws, I'm right there with you. But they were ordered to raid the house of a criminal, and (stupidly) concluded he was dangerous enough to warrant an armed intrusion.

    Then, the criminal they decided was dangerous enough to justify a SWAT team pointed a gun at them.

    There are five steps here. 1) The drug laws. 2) The decision by the police and DA to enforce the laws on the books. 3) The decision to bust this guy. 4) The decision to use a SWAT team. 5) The decision by the police to shoot the guy when he pointed the gun at him.

    1 is stupid, but not the cops' fault. 2 is the right thing to do. 3 I dunno. Looks like they were busting a small fry, might not have been worth it. 4 is stupid, but I don't know whose fault it was - the cops on the raid, or their bosses. 5 seems unavoidable, once 1-4 are already in place.

    Put the blame where it belongs for this tragedy, is all I'm saying.

  • ||

    Oops, 4.5) the decision to enter the house without clearly indentifying themselves. Stupid, but I don't know whose fault that was.

  • ||

    And yet we wonder why mainstream people think libertarians are merely clean, well spoken anarchists when the main theme of this thread is "all cops are corrupt, evil people that want to kill us all." and some write(obliquely)about going to kill cops. Insane.

  • ||

    "2) The decision by the police and DA to enforce the laws on the books."

    "2 is the right thing to do."

    So joe, are you saying that enforcing bad and immoral laws is ok because "they are on the books?"

  • ||

    thoreau

    The not giving a warning is a policy followed so the evil drug dealers cannot flush their evil drugs down the toilet. Their reasoning is that if they stand outside and call out a warning and give the guy time to process it that's what he'll do.

    joe

    Drug laws are to a large extent cops' fault. Their unions and associations spend huge sums of money lobbying for them.

    But of course for the most part drug laws are the fault of our neighbors. Even the one's who say "Oh, I'm not worried about the guy who wants to smoke a joint now and then" just want to give endless power to the police "to keep the children from getting hooked" of course and especially well you never know about "those people" across town (yes "those people", you know).

  • ||

    And yet we wonder why mainstream people think libertarians are merely clean, well spoken anarchists when the main theme of this thread is "all cops are corrupt, evil people that want to kill us all." and some write(obliquely)about going to kill cops. Insane.

    And people wonder why some decry the quality of education in this country when they observe the reading comprehension skills of morons like BladeDoc.

  • ||

    Jennifer clearly right on this. There is simply no justification for ruining (or ending) someone's life simply because you're told to do so when you don't even believe it is the right thing to do. I can't stand the true believers who think someone deserves that treatment for smoking pot, and yes those who pass the drug laws bare much of the responsibility, but if I believed in hell I'd think there was a special place reserved for those who go along with immorality simply because it was their job. Take a particular subject - this guy or anyone else about to be arrested, raided, etc. - and ask: Do you believe it is a moral to destroy this person's life? If you answer no, then you simply cannot in good conscience take part in that destruction.

    Christ, the last thing we need is a country so full of "respect for authority" that we all go around blindly obeying every law, directive, order, rule, etc. that we are given without regard to its morality, or lack of it, as the case may be. Does anyone think the marshal who returned the fugitive slave to his "owner" yet personally believed slavery was immoral, did the right thing because, after all, it was his job? If so you're not the kind of company I'd like to keep.

  • ||

    joe-

    So, not too long ago Texas had some sodomy laws. Any thoughts on the matter?


    Isaac-

    What about arresting him when he's outside of his house so he can't destroy evidence? Yeah, it's really suspenseful on 24 when they raid a terrorist hideout and run with their guns drawn to stop the bad guy before he can destroy evidence/detonate a bomb/kill himself to take his knowledge to the grave.

    But in real life, a sudden raid on a house seems like a good way to wind up with a violent encounter, while grabbing somebody as he leaves his house seems safer.

    I'm no expert, but my understanding is that with enough patience, creativity, and careful planning it is possible to arrest almost anybody with minimal risk of violence. No, not everybody, but close to it.

  • ||

    ahhh one of these days... bare = bear = embarrassed

  • ||

    I'm no expert, but my understanding is that with enough patience, creativity, and careful planning it is possible to arrest almost anybody with minimal risk of violence. No, not everybody, but close to it.

    You might think so. But for some reason the police in this country have decided to base their policies on the exact opposite approach. Shock and awe, I guess.

  • ||

    So joe, are you saying that enforcing bad and immoral laws is ok because "they are on the books?"

    Matt, if government we elect creates the immoral laws and we reelect them again, are we an immoral society to begin with? Obviously we elected these immoral law makers and have yet to remove them from office and install people who will glady remove these immoral laws. You might as well ask joe if he enjoys being between a rock and a hard place. He has to abide by the laws that our elected officials create.

  • ||

    "I find myself saying this a lot lately: I have a lot of respect for people whose job is to risk their lives on a daily basis to keep safety, order,and ultimately, freedom in our society.
    I'm bothered by people who hate cops just for the hell of it, especially when a lot of those people have had well-deserved encounters with the police."

    I have a hard time understanding/believing that a cop's job is to "risk thier life on a daily basis to keep safety, order and freedom in our society." I've had my share of encounters with the police and they are almost exclusively traffic-related.

    Cop: "Did you know you were driving 45 in a 35?"
    Cop: "You didn't come to a full and complete stop at that stop sign"
    My response to both: "Its a divided highway and I've been looking all around and there's no one else even on this road (except you hiding behind that bush over there). What harm am I causing? Better yet, who are you protecting?"

    Unfortunately, most police are just an extension of the IRS, here to collect more taxes from you in the form of "penalties for bad behavior." Not to downplay the horror of being shot in your home by comparing against moving violations, but its amazing -- when you think about your own personal experiences -- the ratio of times you've been "served or protected" vs. the times you've simply been "served" with a bill which only "serves" to maintain funding for a useless bunch of pigs.

  • ||

    Do you seriously believe that "To Serve and Protect" refers to duty the police have toward the serfs? Or is it that we have a duty to serve and protect the police?

    No, but is it too much trouble to pretend it does?

  • ||

    The question of how could people in a free country allow this to go on reminded me of a story I heard on NPR this morning. The story was about how the children of people who need to write wills need to talk with their parents so that there is an equitable distribution of emotion-filled items. It mentioned that the most common reason for rich parents to disown children is when the kid is addicted to drugs. It causes more "disowning" than going to prison, according to the report.

    If that is accurate, I see it as HIGHLY unlikely that this nation's attitude toward drug users will change in the near term. As much as our resident troll Juanita / Jane / whoever can give us a laugh or anneurism, I have a feeling (s)he has attitudes that are in line with far more people than anyone else on this board. I hope I'm wrong on that, but I fear I'm not.

  • ||

    There is simply no justification for ruining (or ending) someone's life simply because you're told to do so when you don't even believe it is the right thing to do.

    This is where I asked how does the shooter feel now that he knows the guy had merely 2 ounces of pot? For all we know, he may have went in with the quality of intel that led America into Iraq looking for mass stockpiles of WMD. When being briefed for this raid, he may have been told that this guy is a confirmed drug runner known to be armed and dangerous and to treat him with extreme prejudice. The guy pulls a gun out of defense and there you have it.

    And again, as to immoral laws, I recall a majority of H&R commenters calling for the reelection of Bush, who always upholds the rule of law. Now commenters are suggesting we pick and choose which laws are moral/immoral and follow those we seek to be moral? Maybe electing a flip-flopper does have some merit.

  • ||

    Jumping back to the semantics topic, I think that Jennifer and Isaac are right about how cops now make reference to "civilians" rather than "citizens."

    Another such trend that I find troubling is the switch from using the term Peace Officer to Law Enforcement Officer.

  • ||

    Nathan, you're not crazy. The eccentric guy in question was Donald Scott (it was an ongoing story here for several years) and there are a few pieces that mention him here including Ill-Gotten Gains and Good faith breeds bad cops.

  • ||

    Leave it to Joe to stick up for the poor misunderstood SWAT team members here.

  • ||

    It's been years since I frequented any law enforcement discussion boards. But I'll bet the cops there -- if they are discussing this at all -- are saying that the cop in this case is the true victim. Just like cops always are when they harm an innocent civilian.

    It takes a special breed of person to believe that "It was Amadou Diallo who set the stage for tragedy."


    And for those of you wondering, yes, I also posted that above comment here at at August 8, 2005 10:05 PM. I've seen that type of mindset so much that I'll probably keep posting it every time a story like this somes up.

    Expected comments by cops on various discussion boards:

    1. "What a terrible tragedy. Our prayers are with the officer."

    2. "You weren't there. You don't know all the facts. You don't have the right to engage in cop-bashing."

    3. "We police our own, so there is no need for an outside investigation."

    4. "Reporting this in the liberal-media* is a violation of the officer's right to be innocent until proven guilty. I guess constitutional rights don't apply to cops. Woe is us."

    * "Liberal media" has included the editorial pages of the Wall Street Journal.

  • ||

    JSM:
    "For all we know, he may have went in with the quality of intel that led America into Iraq looking for mass stockpiles of WMD."

    Yup. Of course the results of poor intel (or not using it) cuts both ways. I remember an incident in Portland, OR back in 99 where the police had good intel on a heavily armed felon with prior armed confrontation record, and didn't use it. Perp (using AK-47) killed one cop (Officer Colleen Waibel), wounded another. Oops!

    Bottom line; War sucks, the soldier prosecuting his mission rarely knows all the facts, and those making policy need to be held responsible.
    Blaming the implementors of a policy for the policy itself isn't necessarily reasonable.

  • ||

    I recall a majority of H&R commenters calling for the reelection of Bush

    I don't. If it was a majority at all it was a pretty small majority. Either way, most the posters here were neither shills for Bush nor great fans of Kerry.

    Now commenters are suggesting we pick and choose which laws are moral

    I sure hope so. I'd say it's more than a suggestion; it's an ethical duty.

    Maybe electing a flip-flopper does have some merit.

    Whether Kerry was any more of a flip-flopper than any politician is another issue and moot at this point anyway, but I don't see how it is relevant to not obeying immoral laws. That isn't flip-flopping, that's just being a decent human being.

  • ||

    This is yet another tragedy of the militarization of civilian law enforcement. You can't use the same Rules of Engagement against suspected domestic criminals that you would on a battlefield and expect to avoid this kind of bloodshed.

    As for whether the cop who shot this guy was a jack-booted thug, I doubt it. He's a victim of a BAD set of ROEs, much like Lon Horiuchi, the FBIs HRT Sniper who pulled the trigger on Vicki Weaver at Ruby Ridge.

    I mean, far be it from me to defend someone who shot someone while they believed they were defending their home from unidentified attackers (especially since I know I'd have done the same thing).

    But the sad reality is that these guys are taught to perform dynamic entry close-quarters combat maneuvers much like a military counter-terrorism team - and then they are ordered to conduct operations against suspected criminals using those military tactics.

    There are occasions that warrant such a response (the body-armored bank robbers in LA, for example) - but those situations are WAY too rare. So you end up with some expensive, highly-trained guys with nothing to do except bust the local barkeep who deals a little marijuana on the side.

    It's a bad, BAD idea to use exceptional force in unexceptional situations. Whoever authorized this particular raid needs to have his ass handed to him. But it's unlikely - once the cops were getting shot at - that the cop who killed the guy felt he had any choice. Avoiding that Catch-22 is something that pulling back the leash on when such units are employed would definitely stop this kind of crap from happening.

    (Outside of crooked cops and stupid cops, which DOES happen, sadly. But thankfully, that's rarer than most TV shows would lead one to believe.)

  • ||

    Rob-

    I agree. The blame lies with the people who made the decision to conduct the raid in this manner, not with the guy who pulled the trigger (unless, of course, he was in on the decision process). Once the situation was setup, and the cops entered at night without clearly identifying themselves, it was almost inevitable that he would seek to defend himself, and at that point the cops had no choice but to defend themselves as well.

    It is, of course, true that this is a direct result of the drug war, but let's not shift all of the blame onto the distant decision-makers who steer that monstrosity. There's enough blame to go around, and some of it falls on whoever decided to arrest him at home, at night, without clearly identifying themselves or announcing their presence.

    And let's not pretend that the only solution is the currently unattainable one (legalization). It is possible to arrest pot dealers in a less risky manner. I don't want to come across as defending the practice of arresting pot dealers, but it's better than killing them.

    It is inevitable that the Drug War will be a disaster. But that doesn't mean that the police leadership should get a free ride for making the disaster even bigger.

  • ||

    The concealed weapons permit, was a "major factor" in the department's decision to involve the SWAT team, Voss said.

    "The potential for violence was there," Voss said. SWAT officers must knock first and announce their presence, Voss said. If no one answers, the door comes down. "Unfortunately, this is one of those that's gone bad," he said.


    I remembered this quote from the original Sun-Sentinal article. They sent in the SWAT team because he had a pistol permit(which, at least in CT, are issued through local P.D.s). Poor bastard.

  • ||

    Hey, Thoreau,

    Has it crossed your mind that maybe there was never any intention of arresting this guy,...of taking him alive?

  • ||

    JW-

    If I start thinking thoughts like that I might get depressed enough to go have a drink with Warren.

    (No offense to Warren, it's just that I never drink. So I'd have to be pretty darn depressed to start.)

  • ||

    There's sure a lot of big talk here from some people about how important it is to disobey immoral laws. Not that I disagree, but no decision in the world is too easy to make for someone who neither has to actually make it nor live with the consequences. Give that a little thought, you know?

  • ||

    For those who say the SWAT guys deserve some sympathy, I"m not buying it at all. I don't even care if they thought they were acting in good faith.

    I don't remember where I read this, but a writer from a previous generation pointed out that when people cause great harm through action or inaction which they believed to be harmless, what matters is not the sincerity of their beliefs, but whether they had a RIGHT to those beliefs, based on the evidence available.

    The writer gave the following example: It's 17th century England. A man owns a boat used to ferry colonists across the Atlantic to settle in the New World. Now it's an old boat, and it hasn't had any maintenance or overhaul work done in awhile, and when a group of colonists rents the boat to make the crossing the man thinks maybe he should have some work done on the boat first. But that would be awfully expensive. And the man figures the boat's made a hundred crossings already with no troubles at all (so there's no reason to just assume there will be trouble now), and besides, a merciful God would not allow anything to happen to a boat filled with pious, innocent families and children out to found a city in the sight of God, right?

    So when the boat sets out on its journey and goes down at sea with the loss of everyone on board, the man was as shocked as anybody, and pocketed his insurance check with a clear conscience. But though he felt free of guilt, the facts of the matter showed he had no right to such a feeling.

    Previous posters in this thread have pointed out that this case got almost NO mention in the media. Very few Americans are aware of it. But you can bet that a lot of cops are. I'm sure it's made the cop-message boards mentioned by another poster here, the message boards where the cops earnestly and sincerely explain why Amadou Diallo really brought his fate upon himself.

    So the SWAT team members no doubt knew more than most of us here about the disastrous history of SWAT team drug raids--the people killed for tiny amounts of drugs; the people killed who had no drugs at all, but the SWAT team got the address wrong; the children killed while the cops shot at their suspect parents--all of that. And that's why I don't CARE how sincere these SWAT team guys were. Even if they thought they were doing the right thing, they had no right to think that, based upon the evidence already available to them.

    The only way I'll sympathize with any of these killers is if, upon reflection, they not only feel remorse for their actions but make public statements to the fact, pointing out that the number of times this SWAT stuff has backfired suggests that maybe it's not a good practice, however reasonable it may sound in theory. But I bet they all either keep their mouths shut or scramble to explain why really, they bear no responsibility for anything bad.

  • ||

    Not that I disagree, but no decision in the world is too easy to make for someone who neither has to actually make it nor live with the consequences. Give that a little thought, you know?

    Oh please. Sounds like the kind excuses people offer for doing things they know, or ought to know, they shouldn't. Easy for me or not I stand by what I said. We need more people, especially those with the power to do great harm, to think about the morality of their actions and not simply go along with the crowd. I don't think it is all that much to ask, but apparently it is too much to hope for.

  • ||

    Here's something that I sort of said before but I want to make it explicit:

    If a commander decides to conduct the raid in a manner that he knows will probably lead to an armed response by the suspect, isn't he endangering the lives of the cops under his command? Do the cop message boards have anything to say about that?

  • ||

    There also seems to be very little media coverage of this story or the Marc Emery case in Canada. I think the DEA is actively trying to squelch any stories regarding good people (who might be just like friends and neighbors) getting caught up in the war on marijuana users and killed or sent to prison for life. I think the DEA realizes these stories could be used against them.

    I am an AOL user and I noticed this morning that they had a story on Marc Emery, but it has been pulled. All of the other stories are the same, but the only story regarding Marc was over a week old (Reuters), not a sign of the new story what so ever. But that's not the really interesting part.

    In the story, it had a poll asking if the Canadians should refuse to extradite Marc, it was like over 70% in favor of refusing. It also asked if marijuana laws were to strict, lenient etc. It had a wide margin on the too strict end. I can't recall the exact numbers, but it was like over 60-70% on the too strict choice. I was going to check it again, but it was gone. I was really surprised myself and tonight I wondered, if the DEA may have had that story spiked. Is there any way to find out?

    There is no sign of the story on AOL news now. I have this really suspicious feeling about the whole thing, it's a pretty strong feeling that the DEA is doing everything it can to spin this, but they can't, so they just erase the news or intimidate people into pulling stories. I also have not seen any coverage on the Emery case on the national news here, which I think is very interesting.

  • ||

    Some excerpts to illuminate my point:
    "Yet another reason to have absolutely no respect for these goons. I seriously think they use these SWAT tactics essentially because they think it's fun to dress up and play army-guy and they get off on the "excitement" of a big raid."

    "Because you need military equipment if you're going to fight The Enemy. And that's how cops view non-cops--not citizens deserving of protection, but The Enemy." "Since there is no were near enough real crime to justify the number of SWAT teams you need to manufacture some "crime"

    "When you're talking about murderous, power-abusing thugs there are two possibilities--they're sociopaths (or even psychopaths), in which case the idea of a conscience doesn't even apply, or else they behave in good conscience because they've convinced themselves that the people they kill really were threats."

    "The ones who still have some humanity, you mean." (i.e. only the cops who use pot)

    I could continue but I feel fairly strongly that my reading comprehension is good enough to understand from the threads noted that "cops" or "SWAT cops" are subhuman psychopaths who invent crimes so they can kill people. Other minor themes are also pot should be legal (I agree) and cops should announce their entry (I agree). But the major ranting has been clearly of the all cops are eeeevil variety. In my opinion this is not an attitude that will/can advance a libertarian agenda.

  • ||

    BladeDoc--

    As I pointed out in my post at 1:48 on August 13, thse SWAT teams know far more than the average American about SWAT activities gone wrong; they knew damn well (or should have known) that such things often lead to catastrophe. And they did it anyway.

    If a pediatrician shakes a baby to death, I'm not letting him off the hook because "Gee, he didn't think he was doing anything dangerous, he thought the baby would have fun!" The dumb SOB should have known.

    Incidentally, you seem to disagree with my theory that cops need lots of military equipment because they're fighting The Enemy. So tell me, why do YOU think they've militarized themselves?

  • ||

    Also, BladeDoc, I haven't heard any mea culpas from the SWAT members now that the damage has been done.

  • ||

    Face the facts:

    Politicians make unconstitutional laws.
    Mindless cops enforce those "laws".
    The rest of us pay for it all with our lives (war on drugs = war on Americans).

    The fact that no one in law enforcement will tell the truth proves that cops are brainwashed into a "us vs them" mentality.This is why cops will always justify deadly "force" and then try to cover it up later.

    Amerika has been a police state since 911.

    The treasonous politicians will not be happy until every non-cop and non-pol has been processed at least once through any of our various prisons.

    Why doesn't anyone fight back? Are we all sheep?

  • JUICE||

    They didn't know he was innocent.


    Yeah, in America you're guilty until proven innocent (or killed by urban commandos serving a warrant)

  • ||

    Well,maybe the protesters of a bygone era,the 60s and 70s were right..PIGS.

    After 33 years and well over a TRILLION dollars we still have shootings by the PIGS to control that evil,marajuina.

    You see, if it were legalized think of the people that would be out of a job and the monetary value of it would go to hell and the authorities would have a reduction of income.

    Legalize the stuff and let the chips fall where they may. I'm damned sure it could be no worse than the present situation.

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